SALEM–Through a special waste collection held in Salem on Oct. 18, some 3,566 pounds, or 1.78 tons, of electronic waste and some 114 tires were collected and recycled. The items were diverted from landfills to recycling facilities in Missouri.

The collection efforts were a partnership between the City of Salem, Missouri Department of Natural Resources (MDNR), Ozark Rivers Solid Waste Management District (ORSWMD) and the Meramec Regional Planning Commission (MRPC).

Some 59 households throughout the seven counties of ORSWMD participated in the event with 81 percent being from Dent County, recycling 164 pieces of electronics. This includes 47 televisions, 21 computer monitors, 15 hard drives, and 14 printers among many others.

A $5 fee was charged for televisions and computer monitors, and all other items were free to drop off. The fee associated with recycling televisions and computer monitors covers the cost of recycling lead-based components in these items.

A small fee ranging from $1.50 to $5 was also assessed for each tire depending on the type of tire.

MRPC contracted with Midwest Recycling Center to recycle the electronic items and Missouri Vocational Enterprises to recycle the tires.

The Ozark Rivers District includes Crawford, Dent, Gasconade, Maries, Phelps, Pulaski and Washington counties and their cities. The solid waste district is tasked with reducing by 40 percent the amount of waste generated for disposal. Using its tipping fee dollars, the Ozark Rivers Solid Waste District used a grant to help subsidize disposal costs and cover the costs of the collection, including staff time to coordinate the events and to advertise them.

Area residents with questions about recycling may contact Nongluk Tunyavanich at (573) 265-2993 or by email at

Formed in 1969, MRPC is a voluntary council of governments serving Crawford, Dent, Gasconade, Maries, Osage, Phelps, Pulaski and Washington counties and their respective cities. A professional staff of 22, directed by the MRPC board, offers technical assistance and services, such as grant preparation and administration, housing assistance, transportation planning, environmental planning, ordinance codification, business loans and other services to member communities.